How Google, AirBnB Use Art to Boost Creativity in the Workplace- IPaintMyMind How Google, AirBnB Use Art to Boost Creativity in the Workplace- IPaintMyMind
Google, Etsy, & AirBnB: How Tech Giants Use Art to Boost Creativity in the Workplace

Google, Etsy, & AirBnB: How Tech Giants Use Art to Boost Creativity in the Workplace

Written by:
Evan La Ruffa
Feb 19, 2024

Google, the pioneer of innovative workplace design, has long understood the need to boost creativity in the workplace through the essential role of art. Google’s offices around the world are abundant with art installations and creative decor that inspire and attract.

From graffiti walls to intricate sculptures, the tech giant skillfully integrates art into its work environment to stimulate imagination and break down barriers to creative thinking. They believe in the principle of vibrant environment fostering vibrant ideas.

In the Google headquarters at Mountain View, CA they have made comprehensive use of color theory, understanding how different hues can influence mood and cognition, and boost creativity in the workplace.

Furthermore, Google’s “Artist in Residence” program offers artists the opportunity to create on-site, allowing employees to engage directly with the creative process. 

This unique interaction with art not only provides a refreshing distraction but also sparks innovative thinking and collaborative dialogue, emboldening the minds that are shaping our digital future.

While Google’s approach is intrinsically idiosyncratic, reflecting its commitment to innovation and breakthrough thinking, it is an illuminating study of how art can be seamlessly integrated into a work environment to enhance creativity and in turn, boost creativity in the workplace.

google offices decor design anastasia tumanova lobby

Photo: Anastasia Tumanova

Etsy: The Role of Handmade Art in Office Culture

Craft marketplace Etsy embodies a commitment to handmade, unique art, and it’s not afraid to bring this passion into its office spaces. At the Brooklyn headquarters, the office is adorned with an embellishment of handmade exhibits crafted by its employees and local artisans. This continuous exposure to creativity and craftsmanship helps foster an office culture that values innovation and individuality.

Etsy’s commitment to art extends to its communal workshops, where employees are encouraged to make their art. This hands-on engagement with the creative process is an effective way to facilitate imaginative thinking and problem-solving skills. 

It sends out a clear message – everyone is a creator, promoting an atmosphere of shared creativity and sustaining an environment of aesthetic appreciation and artistic inspiration.

Etsy’s approach to enhancing productivity through art is deeply intertwined with its brand ethos and culture. It’s a testimony to the value of authenticity and how lived value can be a powerful beacon around which productivity can rally.

AirBnB: Using Local Art to Boost Creativity in the Workplace

AirBnB, known for its platform that brings local flavor and experience to global travelers, embodies this spirit in its office environment. The office interiors are modeled after listings on the company’s site, with local art at the crux of this design philosophy. 

Reflecting the diversity of the locations they serve, art pieces range from murals to installations, showcasing the work of local artists and infusing cultural facets into their everyday workspace.

Equating travel with the broadening of perspective, AirBnB realizes the need for an immersive, enriching environment to encourage innovative thinking. Local art presents a globe-trotting experience without leaving the office, stimulating curiosity, fostering respect for diversity, and ultimately inspiring out-of-the-box thinking.

By bringing the ‘world’ to the workstation, AirBnB transforms their office into an environment that is actively engaging, culturally enriching, and endlessly inspiring. The company firmly believes that an educated and informed workforce is a productive workforce – and it seems the plan is working.

Case Study Analysis: Common Themes and Unique Approaches

Analyzing these case studies, we find common threads linking their approach to art and productivity. All three companies view art as a transformative vehicle to enhance employee creativity and increase employee productivity.

However, each company leverages art in a way that aligns with its brand ethos and mirrors its unique culture. Google embraces vibrant, innovative artistic expressions to mirror their groundbreaking technological advances. 

Etsy encourages handmade crafts to reflect its commitment to individuality and craftsmanship. Airbnb employs local art as an echo of its belief in creating immersive, cultural travel experiences.

Despite these thematic divergences, they all acknowledge the transformative power of art in stimulating thought, fostering conversation, and ultimately increase employee productivity. Their unique deployments of art in the workspace serve as inspiring precedents for other companies seeking to harness the power of art to bolster productivity.


Whether Google or any other company, if you want to boost creativity in the workplace, there are ways art can be embedded in the mission, work, and even spaces the company inhabits. In fact, doing so in a comprehensive way becomes an extension into brand identity and recognition, which goes way beyond decor or employee engagement.

Google has plenty to teach many large companies about business, but most would be best-served by following this example first.

Learn more about how IPaintMyMind can boost creativity in the workplace with art installations and events for corporate spaces.

Written by:
Evan La Ruffa
Feb 19, 2024